Saturday, July 23, 2011

Aging Gracefully

Recently, I ran into an old friend that I haven't seen in awhile.  I saw her at a distance at first, and as she came closer I noticed that something was oddly different about her yet I couldn't quite put my finger on it.  We chatted a bit about our lives and I shared my excitement over my Etsy shop.  As we chatted, I realized what was different-she looked frightened and tense.  My concern about her well being quickly vanished when she informed me that she had recently had her eyes "done".  She proceeded to tell me that her eyelids had drooped to the point that it was affecting her vision so......Hmmm, seems to me I had heard that same malady was inflicted upon another friend of mine.  Insurance doesn't cover cosmetic surgery, but if the problem affects your vision......If you practice the custom of putting wooden plates in your eyelids much like the natives did with their lips in The National Geographics and then removed them years later, maybe...

There is a beautiful softening that comes with natural aging.  Why can't we just let it happen?  I have often stated I would have been better suited to be an adult in the 1950's-pearls, starched apron and all.  Many things about that era appeal to me and it's not just the material items like you might find in Boomer Babies Upcycles.  Who wouldn't want to hang out with your neighborhood girlfriends drinking coffee out of cups with saucers while the kids are...?  Actually, no one knew or really cared where the kids were or what they were doing.  We would happily chat about the newest recipe rage,mock apple pie, that had no apples or any redeeming ingredient at all in it.  One big baked goodness of carbs, sugar, and fat.  After that, we might exchange our newest tricks on how to keep celery in American Chop Suey from going phlacid.  Back then, women aged with grace.  Sure, they had their cold cream and chin slings, but these sightings were saved for the men lucky enough to share their beds.  

The big problem with trying to fight the natural aging process with cosmetic surgery is that the average person can't really take advantage of the full benefits.  They just can't afford it.  So, the person chasing their youth saves their pennies to have the procedure they believe will make them the happiest.  The overweight woman pays thousands of dollars for a tummy tuck and ends up with a small flat midsection on a body that has arms and legs that still belong to the fat lady.  She now looks like a rubber action figure.  If your face is tight and wrinkle free and you have a humongous chicken neck, is this really a pretty sight?  If you lift your arms and let the water balloons hang down freely, do you think no one will notice because your eyes are pinned back like Kenny Roger's?  

Women of the midcentury aged with grace.  At a certain age, it was common knowledge that it was time for a helmet do.  The long, flowing hair of youth was replaced with a perm with tight little curls that clung as closely as possible to your scalp.  Anything that didn't conform to the helmet was doused with lacquer and sprayed into submission.  There's a certain freedom in this practice.  How easy it must be to never have to worry about how you will wear your hair on a certain day.  You sleep, get up, and every hair is still in place, keeping the integrity of the helmet.  If, per chance, a section of the helmet gets dented, one merely picked it out with a hair pick or even a fork.  Older women of the midcentury adapted to their changing bodies and they didn't have chicken necks.  Their bodies gradually aged and the pieces melted together so everything was merely one dimension from the base of the head to the knees.  No neck, no breasts, no waist, no butt.  Every older woman looked like Mrs. Potatohead and it was ok.  Along with the acceptance of the helmet do, the short string of pearls that once adorned the neck of youth was replaced with the long string of red or  black glass beads that floated around the bosom shelf.

I would like to see more of the beautiful softness that comes with natural aging.  God doesn't make junk.  If, for some reason, your preference is to use every tool available to you to fight the natural aging process, I would like to make a suggestion.  Next time you go out in public, you might want to consider leaving that fat bald guy sporting the bermudas and the white tube socks half way up his calves at home.......

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  1. Oh, this made my day! I was just thinking the other day how my hair was getting too long and I should get a nice, short hair cut befitting my age and statue. Now I know why! LOL!

  2. LOL! I finally went to the "helmet do" this summer!

  3. I tried the helmet do minus the curls, but I think I'm going back to mid length. It just looks better on me! By the way, I don't even use cold cream, just soap and water and my godchild thinks I look younger than she does- she's in her 40s. I think God knew what he was doing and you are just wasting all that money to "look good" and lots of those folks really don't look good!
    Thanks for stopping by my blog and I am already following yours.

  4. This is a fabulous post, one which I agree with wholeheartedly! When you talked about helmet hair, I instantly thought of Aqua-Net hairspray! :D

  5. I've truly enjoyed this read; your writing is very enticing.

    Thank you for coming by earlier!

  6. Thanks, weird amiga! Glad to be a follower of you!!

  7. My mom had eyelid surgery and does not look frightened and tense! She looks beautiful! She did before and she does now. It was for medical reasons and it is amazing how much better she can see now! I'm very proud of her for having the procedure!

  8. Who ARE you and why have you just appeared in my life?? You write as if you are reading my mind! Also, you are hilariously funny and...where is your latest book? How can I get a regular dose from you? I understand the first one is always free.... :)

  9. Omigosh, just found you from the Etsy blogger board. Was resting my brain from a grueling day of playing posting catch-up & how glad I am that I did! I'll be back soon to do some catch up here too. What a great post! You know us too well :- )